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UVU Selects Woodbury School of Business Dean

4 March 2010 2 Comments

March 4, 2010
For Immediate Release

For more information: Liz Hitch (801) 863-8700
University Marketing & Communications: Erin Spurgeon, (801) 863-6807
Written by: Erin Spurgeon, (801) 863-6807

Utah Valley University is pleased to announce the selection of Dr. Norman S. Wright of Alfaisal University in Saudi Arabia as the new dean of the Woodbury School of Business. Wright will begin his service as the business school dean beginning July 1.

Wright holds both a Ph.D. and an M.A. in management from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. Prior to Wharton, he attended Brigham Young University where he earned a master’s in public administration and a bachelor’s degree in economics.

“I am very pleased to welcome Dr. Norman Wright to UVU as the dean of the Woodbury School of Business,” said UVU Academic Vice President Liz Hitch. “Dr. Wright brings the right mix of outstanding academic credentials and scholarly work, administrative experience in higher education, and international experience to lead the AACSB-accredited Woodbury School of Business to reach and exceed their aspiration to be the ‘business school of choice and a leader in student development, entrepreneurship, global involvement, and innovative teaching,’ as stated in its mission statement.”

Wright joined Alfaisal University in 2008 and currently serves as the founding dean and professor of management for the College of Business. He has served as consulting dean for the American University School of Business & Entrepreneurship at its affiliate University in Nigeria; as assistant dean of business sciences at Zayed University in the United Arab Emirates, and as chair of the Department of Management, Marketing & Public Administration at the American University of Sharjah. He has also served as a department chair and faculty member at Brigham Young University-Hawaii.

Of the move to UVU, Wright, a Utah native, said he is happy to be able to serve in an area he called home for so long.

“As someone who grew up two blocks from campus, I have watched with a sense of great satisfaction as [UVU] went from being Utah Technical College to UVCC to UVSC and now to full university status,” Wright said. “UVU and the Woodbury School are on the move and I enjoy being part of growing institutions of higher learning.”

Wright is widely published in business journals and has been an active trainer, consultant and personal coach for such diverse organizations as Dubai Municipality, World Wildlife Fund, HSBC, China Youth Travel Services, Valmont International and the Polynesian Cultural Center. While he is best recognized for his work in cross-cultural management, his recent research has focused on the nexus of business and the natural environment. Fitting nicely with UVU’s mission to foster globally conscious “stewards of place,” Wright is currently one of the lead authors on the Saudi Arabia annual report for the Global Entrepreneurship Consortium.

“Upon spending just a few hours on campus, it became clear to me that the UVU faculty, staff and administration are good people, the type of people who are capable of putting aside ego and self‑interest to do what is best for the institution, the type of people who care about each other and the students they serve,” Wright said. “I am honored to have been perceived as a good fit for the UVU culture.”

Dr. Ian Wilson has been serving as interim dean of the Woodbury School of Business for the past two years. He also served as dean of the school from 1989 to 2001. Wilson will now teach full-time within the Woodbury School effective fall semester.

“To say we’ll miss Ian’s leadership is an understatement,” Hitch said. “We’re indebted to him as an institution for willingly serving a second stint as dean. He didn’t ask for the job, but he’s again played an invaluable role guiding the Woodbury School at a pivotal time as we’ve transitioned to university status and introduced an MBA program. Our loss at the administrative level, however, is the students’ gain, and we’re thrilled to have Ian in the classroom.”


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  • Trevor said:

    Couldn’t be more excited about this new Dean. Thanks.

  • Kelly & Elaine Merrill said:

    Norm! Congrats! We are so happy for you. I’ve had a difficult time tracking you down. We hope all goes well for you in your new assignment.
    The Merrills

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